Tell us a bit about yourself!
My name is Thomas Bainbridge and I am one of two bursary winners from 2013. I grew up in Townsville where I attended both Belgian Gardens and Pimlico State Schools. I started engineering at JCU straight after School in 2004 but deferred during second semester to take some time off travel and gain some life experience.
What made you decide to apply for the Philip Leong Youth Programme?
Half way through my degree I experienced some family hardship and my student life suddenly became much more difficult - juggling work and family support/commitments. I applied for the Philip Leong Youth Programme after seeing it advertised in the Townsville Bulletin and was fortunate enough to receive the major bursary of 2013.
How has the bursary helped you?
This generous bursary enabled me to stop working and simply focus on my studies whilst still being able to spend time with my family through a difficult time. Furthermore, I was able to achieve First Class Honours in a degree of Mechanical Engineering which has greatly assisted with my long term goal to work/research in the area of ocean renewable energy.
What are your plans for the future?
I have decided not to pursue postgraduate studies straight after an undergraduate degree to avoid burnout; however, with my strong academic results was able to gain employment with a specialised design consultancy that will equip me with a skillset that I can hopefully transfer to the ocean renewable industry after some time.
Any final remarks?
You and the fellow board members/stakeholders awarded me the bursary which significantly helped me through a family hardship during my last year of Uni... I can honestly say that without the Philip Leong Bursary my final year of university would have been a completely different story.